MINI USA announced today that the upcoming all electric model from Oxford, dubbed MINI Cooper SE, will arrive in the US early next year. That gives us a better timeline than before regarding when the EV will actually be unveiled. The British company said it will be this year and, given the news today, it looks like we’re going to see the car for the first time towards the end of 2019. Most likely production will kick off around November and the first cars will be delivered in Q1 of 2020.

The new MINI Cooper SE will share quite a lot of its underpinnings with the BMW i3 S. The electric motor, the batteries and electronics will be shared and that’s definitely good news. The BMW i3 S got a rather warm welcome from the media and that’s because it truly drives great. It may not be drastically different from the standard i3 but all the changes done to it have transformed it into a better driving car.

Thus, the MINI Cooper SE will have around 180 HP and 200 lb-ft of torque, available instantly. Furthermore, it will have the new DSC system from the i3 S which is faster than any other used by BMW before it, reacting almost instantly. That’s terribly important when talking about an electric vehicle with instant torque. If the car will also be as light as the i3, chances are it’s going to be pretty fast and fun as well, even with front-wheel drive.

A small, electric car for congested city centers seems like a great way to revitalize the MINI brand, which has been suffering lately. Sales haven’t been doing great but the Brits are hoping to turn things around with the new electric model and a couple of juiced up JCW alternatives like the 300 HP Clubman and Countryman choices. They will be available for purchase later this year.